Depression in dwarf gourami head
My recently acquired (about 2 weeks ago) dwarf gourami appears to have a small depression in the very top of his head. I would say it's about the size of a pinhead. It's a brown spot, and I'm worried that it might be some kind of ailment.
I'm extremely new to this hobby, and I recently read a book about fish diseases, so this may be a case of hypochondria.
I wish I could post a picture of him, but my camera only seems to take fuzzy out of focus pictures :(
Should I stop worrying? Or does anyone know what this could be? Is it a natural feature of the fish?
I have no idea what that could be, especially without a picture. I do know however that a person can worry themselves to death over little things they notice on a fish or a fish behavior. How is the fish behaving? Does he seem normal as far as swimming? Does he eat? Have you checked your water parameters to make sure nothing is wrong there? There is only so much a person can do but if the fish came from the store with that spot, is acting perfectly normal after 2 weeks and your water is fine... I wouldn't worry much.
Now, I just had to tell you. I just got home from a very exhausting day at work and read the thread title. For a brief moment I thought "how does he/she know her fish is depressed?" ha ha
You're right, depression in the head is a somewhat misleading title. Sorry! My fish doesn't seem to be acting any different from when I bought him. He loves to hide in the plants and in his cave.
The tank is a 37 gal freshwater with only artificial plants, and I tested the water with test strips and found 0 ammonia and 0 nitrates with 7.2 pH and very soft water hardness.
The aquarium is a month old and the gourami was added 1-2 weeks ago, so I don't really know a lot about his behavior patterns yet. He is in the tank with another dwarf gourami, 4 hillstream loaches and 3 xray tetras.
I didn't quarantine them, unfortunately. I read a lot about dwarf gourami disease, is that a real thing? I can't find anything about it in my fish books, but I did read it online.
Hopefully this picture shows what I'm talking about. I'm really worried and don't want to lose any fish!
I see it but do not have an answer as to what it is. Maybe a nip from another fish? Keep an eye on it. I would recommend you get a better test kit for your water. An API Master test kit for the freshwater tank it what I would recommend. It is far more acurate then the strips are. Also, if your tank has only been up a month, it likely is not cycled so really watch those levels. Gourami are usually not the best option for cycling a tank.
Any chance you would consider some live plants? They help to use up some of those excess nutrients making the water safer for fish. Gourami REALLY like the floating plants. Mine hangs out in the Pennywort all the time. You don't have to do anything with that stuff either, it grows easily. You just literally drop it in the tank on the top of the water, it floats around and grows. While it is doing that, it is helping the water quality.
During the "cycle period" I would recommend doing larger, more frequent water changes and using a good water conditioner like PRIME.
Your fish is quite pretty by the way. Does he have a name?
I haven't thought of a name yet. Maybe I can name him Denton, or Chip! Is Denton a real name? I know it's a town in Texas... but I digress.
I can't believe another fish nipped him - he always seems to be the instigator in the tank. You might be right though.
I'll do a water change tonight. I got him after taking water samples to the store and describing my tank to a fish store employee. I think she gave me bad advice, which I'm really mad about since she was the only employee that seemed to know anything about fish.
I like the idea of floating plants! I'll head out to the store and see about acquiring some Pennywort. I looked up a picture and it's really pretty!
Yeah, don't stress too much about the bad advice from the fish store. It seems that more often then not people go through those "beginner mistakes" and it usually starts with listening to the sales people at the fish store. ha ha You wouldn't belive the things they sold me. Ugh! If only I had NOT been so trusting to start with I could have saved a few hundred dollars.
There are several options for floating plants. Pennywort, Hornwort, Crystalwort, Wisteria, duckweed (I didn't care for that so much) but many people like it a lot. To me, it is sort of messy but all of the others are wonderful. There is one other "wort" kind but I can't for the life of me think of it.
Can't wait to hear what you decide to get. Keep an eye on the water parameters as they can change very fast while cycling a tank. You want to have some Nitrates, obviously but no Nitrite or Ammonia.
I ended up taking him and his brother gourami back :( :( :( I'm so sad about it! It's weird how attached you can get to a fish you only had for a week.
It's for the best though, they weren't happy in my 37 gal with all the water movement I created for my loaches. Hopefully they will find better homes soon. They were so pretty that I'm sure someone else will buy them in no time.
I hope so too. You did the right thing though. It isn't fair to have fish just because you like that kind. A person needs to think of the fish and his/her happiness. Some folks say "I have a fish in a situation for a year and it is still alive" which might be true but it doesn't mean the fish is happy. Happy fish are healthier fish as well.
There are many kinds of fish I would like but I know that I do not have the right set up for them. I would also LOVE to have a few more Gourami BUT I know that they might fight and kill each other so... Obviously, I won't get more Gourami just for me.
If I can get rid of a few dozen Guppies I might think of getting another Gourami in that tank but we shall see. Right now I am just enjoying the one Gourami I have and the other fish as well. I really like the nice peaceful fish.
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